Online Learning And Student Engagement At The Community College Level
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DepartmentCommunity College Leadership Program
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The purpose of this quantitative study was to explore the level of engagement in online learning at the community college level for students at three community colleges in Alabama. The variable, student engagement was defined as “the time and energy students devote to educationally sound activities inside and outside of the classroom, and the policies and practices that institutions use to induce students to take part in these activities” (Kuh, 2003, p. 25). The researcher explored the student engagement of students enrolled in an online learning environment at community colleges in Alabama. This study extended Lerma's (2011) dissertation study of online learning and student engagement at the community college level. Her study, which was conducted with California community colleges, was a replication of Robinson's (2006) dissertation study in online learning and student engagement at the four-year university level. Robinson modified the National Survey for Student Engagement (NSSE) for her study with four-year institutions and Lerma developed a modified version of Robinson's NSSE instrument that better reflected the community college population. Lerma's survey instrument was employed in this study which analyzed and explained relationships between variables, which is an identifiable characteristic of a quantitative study (Creswell, 2009). It served to inform phenomena that are analyzed statistically through data collection (Muijs, 2004). The researcher used an online survey instrument to collect data in a fast, efficient manner.